Cover: A male hoverfly (Eristalis tenax) eyes off a rival male feeding from flowers. These territorial insects visually detect and track their conspecifics at distances of up to several metres. Rigosi et al. (pp. 4364–4369) show that the limitations on the smallest targets that can be visually tracked by Eristalis and several other insect groups are set by the contrast sensitivity of the photoreceptors in specialized regions of the retina. Photo credit: David O'Carroll.
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Learning to starve: impacts of food limitation beyond the stress period
Summary: Animals previously exposed to starvation exhibit a wide range of physiological and molecular changes, some of which persist long afterwards and may offer them and subsequent generations protection from future starvation events.
The evolution of honey bee dance communication: a mechanistic perspective
Summary: We propose that the neural mechanisms of the honey bee dance language involve systems of orientation and spatial processing discovered in the central complex of the insect brain.
Considerations on the role of olfactory input in avian navigation
Summary: If odors are required to activate the integration of local navigational factors into the map, it seems possible that such a process needs to occur only once at a given site.
Control surfaces of aquatic vertebrates: active and passive design and function
Summary: Aquatic animals control their body position using a remarkable diversity of appendages and specialized structures, the function of which is crucial to regulating lift and drag forces for propulsion and maneuvering.
Photoreceptor signalling is sufficient to explain the detectability threshold of insect aerial pursuers
Summary: Across four insect species, the smallest target size a photoreceptor can robustly encode is sufficient to explain the detection limit of higher-order, target-detecting neurons or observed behavioural pursuits.
Cold block of in vitro eyeblink reflexes: evidence supporting the use of hypothermia as an anesthetic in pond turtles
Summary: Veterinary guidelines prohibit hypothermic anesthesia in amphibians and reptiles; however, reflexes to noxious stimuli recorded in vitro are inhibited at temperatures above those during hypothermia induction, blocking transmission of painful stimuli.
Sound-production mechanism in Pomatoschistus pictus
Summary: Our study further tests the sound-producing mechanism in Gobionellinae. As in Gobiinae, it is related to head-pectoral movements, which shows the consistency of the mechanism within Gobiidae.
Audiograms of three subterranean rodent species (genus Fukomys) determined by auditory brainstem responses reveal extremely poor high-frequency cut-offs
Summary: Fukomys mole-rats are subterranean mammals with manifold sensory specializations. Auditory brainstem recordings and audiograms of three Fukomys species reveal a highly restricted hearing range.
Ocellar structure is driven by the mode of locomotion and activity time in Myrmecia ants
Highlighted Article: Investigation of different castes of closely related species of Myrmecia ants reveals that the structure of the simple eye, the ocelli, is influenced by the time at which animals are active and their mode of locomotion.
Frank–Starling mechanism and short-term adjustment of cardiac flow
Summary: The Frank–Starling mechanism has no working in the stability of the circulatory system. Rather, the mechanism accounts for decreasing the need for central control and for speeding up changes in cardiac output.
Plastic responses of bryozoans to ocean acidification
Summary: Colonies of the bryozoan Celleporella cornuta exhibit unique resilience to future ocean acidification. This is achieved through plastic shifts in reproductive investment, calcification and skeletal composition.
Changes in the levels and phosphorylation status of Akt, AMPK, CREB and FoxO1 in hypothalamus of rainbow trout under conditions of enhanced glucosensing activity
Summary: The activation of glucosensing systems in rainbow trout hypothalamus leading to changes in the regulation of food intake occurs in parallel with changes in the abundance and phosphorylation status of Akt, AMPK, CREB and FoxO1.
Differences in titin segmental elongation between passive and active stretch in skeletal muscle
Summary: Elongation of titin proximal and distal segments differs between passive and active stretch in skeletal muscle myofibrils, but not in an actin-dependent manner.
Strong association between corticosterone levels and temperature-dependent metabolic rate in individual zebra finches
Summary: Corticosterone and metabolic rate show a strong positive association between and within individuals at different temperatures, which supports the interpretation of corticosterone as an indicator of metabolic needs.
Flight metabolic rate of Locusta migratoria in relation to oxygen partial pressure in atmospheres of varying diffusivity and density
Highlighted Article: Locusts flying in atmospheres of varying oxygen partial pressure, diffusivity and density reveal an economically designed respiratory system where convection is the principal mechanism of oxygen delivery to the flight muscle.
The metabolic costs of sexual signalling in the chirping katydid Plangia graminea (Serville) (Orthoptera: Tettigoniidae) are context dependent: cumulative costs add up fast
Summary: Significant metabolic costs are associated with calling in katydids, but these costs are context dependent.
Seasonal changes in background levels of deuterium and oxygen-18 prove water drinking by harp seals, which affects the use of the doubly labelled water method
Summary: Changing background values of deuterium and oxygen-18 show freshwater consumption by harp seals, which may complicate calculations of energy expenditure using the doubly labelled water method.
Effects of nutritional deprivation on development and behavior in the subsocial bee Ceratina calcarata (Hymenoptera: Xylocopinae)
Summary: Experimental alteration of pollen levels to recreate conditions of maternal manipulation of resources leads to the development of a worker phenotype and hence reproductive hierarchy in a subsocial bee.
Swim bladder morphology changes with female reproductive state in the mouth-brooding African cichlid Astatotilapia burtoni
Highlighted Article: Redistribution of gas between anterior and posterior chambers of a compartmentalized swim bladder allows mouth-brooding females to better regulate buoyancy and swimming posture during this extreme maternal care behavior.
Critical thermal limits affected differently by developmental and adult thermal fluctuations
Summary: Thermal fluctuations during development in Drosophila melanogaster lead to detrimental cold and beneficial heat acclimation responses, while thermal fluctuations induce little acclimation response during adult exposure.
Kinematics of chisel-tooth digging by African mole-rats
Summary: During digging, mole-rats anchor their upper incisors in the soil while the lower incisors are lifted through the soil. A quick, nose-down rotation of the head finishes an excavation cycle.
The effect of food properties on grasping and manipulation in the aquatic frog Xenopus laevis
Summary: Xenopus laevis is able to individualize the digits, and the mobility and size of the prey significantly influence the kind of grasping pattern used. Grasping abilities are thus not specific to terrestrial or arboreal species.
Maternal loading of a small heat shock protein increases embryo thermal tolerance in Drosophila melanogaster
Highlighted Article: A gene-specific maternal effect confers thermal tolerance to offspring embryos in the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster.
cAMP signaling mediates behavioral flexibility and consolidation of social status in Drosophila aggression
Summary: Phasic recruitment of different cAMP signaling modalities in specific neuronal groups leads to the formation of temporally distinct components of learning and memory in fly aggression.
Sirtuins regulate proteomic responses near thermal tolerance limits in the blue mussels Mytilus galloprovincialis and Mytilus trossulus
Summary: Sirtuins set interspecific differences in heat stress tolerance by affecting the stress proteome in competing blue mussel congeners, Mytilus galloprovincialis and Mytilus trossulus.
Integration of swimming kinematics and ram suspension feeding in a model American paddlefish, Polyodon spathula
Summary: Yaw and heave generate cyclical flow patterns inside the mouth of a mechanized suspension-feeding fish model, aiding food particle transport.
The Forest of Biologists
We are excited to announce the launch of The Forest of Biologists, a new biodiversity initiative created with support from the Woodland Trust, aiming to counteract nature loss and safeguard some of the most critically endangered ecosystems for future generations. Do take a look around our virtual forest. For every Research Article and Review/Commentary article that is published in JEB, a native tree is planted in a forest in the UK.
Celebrating 100 years of discovery
We are proud to be celebrating 100 years of discovery in Journal of Experimental Biology. Visit our centenary webpage to find out more about how we are marking this historic milestone.
Looking back on the first issue of JEB
Journal of Experimental Biology launched in 1923 as The British Journal of Experimental Biology. As we celebrate our centenary, we look back at that first issue and the zoologists publishing their work in the new journal.
In our new Conversation series JEB@100, JEB Editor-in-Chief Craig Franklin talks about the big outstanding questions in the field of physiological plasticity and why he thinks a sense of community is key to the journal's success. Find out more here.
Deer mice overheat and struggle to run in high temperatures
The impacts of warming temperatures associated with climate change on performance are poorly understood in most mammals. Matthew Eizenga and colleagues examined the thermal performance curve of endurance running capacity at high temperatures in the deer mouse (Peromyscus maniculatus).
Propose new workshop for 2025
Do you have an idea for a Workshop? We are now accepting proposals for our 2025 Biologists Workshops programme. As the scientific organiser, your involvement will be focused on the science. We'll take care of all the logistics. In 2025 we'll continue our efforts to diversify our Workshop programme and will be reserving one of our Workshops for an application from a Global South (GS) country to host an event overseas.